DC Universe Online

DC Universe Online (DCUO) is a free-to-play action combat massive multiplayer online game[1] set in the fictional universe of DC Comics. Developed by Daybreak Game Company and co-published by Daybreak Game Company and WB Games, the game was released on January 11, 2011.

DC Universe Online
DC Universe Online Logo
DC Universe Online logo
Developer(s)Daybreak Game Company
Publisher(s)Daybreak Game Company
WB Games
Director(s)S.J. Mueller
Writer(s)Geoff Johns
Composer(s)Gerard Marino
Chad Mossholder
EngineUnreal Engine 3
Platform(s)Microsoft Windows
PlayStation 3 (discontinued)
PlayStation 4
Xbox One
ReleaseMicrosoft Windows, PlayStation 3
January 11, 2011
PlayStation 4
November 15, 2013
Xbox One
April 29, 2016
Genre(s)Massively multiplayer online, action


The player creates a new, original character that interacts with the iconic heroes and villains of DC Comics. Players choose their character's faction (Hero or Villain), gender (male or female), body type (both height and muscularity), personality (comical, flirty, powerful, primal, serious), movement mode (flight, acrobatics, speed or skimming), weapon, and power (fire, ice, gadgets, mental, nature, sorcery, earth, light, electricity, rage, quantum, celestial, munitions, atomic, and water). Numerous hair, skin, and costume types are available, and up to 4 colors can be applied to the color scheme palette. Pre-built templates, inspired by some key DC characters, are available to expedite the character creation process.

When the player's character is named, they are thrown into the world of DC Universe Online with the first experience having to fight their way out of a spaceship. The tutorial teaches basic movement and abilities, counter mechanics, and using power and skill points. Eventually the player's character is made an official member of the Justice League (heroes) or The Society (villains), where they continue on their missions to increase their level and skill in various content. Daybreak Game Company is working to make DC Universe Online more interactive than standard MMO games, while trying to keep their key elements which include a leveling system, raid instances, endgame progression and inventories. The world is mainly a shared, public space. The public space features dynamically-generated content designed for both hero and villain player characters to progress and fight alongside and against a multitude of iconic DC Comics characters, moving forward with stories, many of which are brought forth from the pages of DC comics).[1]

DC Universe Online has been actively updating through Game Updates (GU) and Hotfixes. Aside from bug fixes, several Game Updates involve Seasonal Events which provide special feats, styles, base items, overworld missions and instances exclusive to the time frame it runs for, usually a month. There are three Events that tend to cycle throughout the year: Survival Mode, Legends PvE and Stabilizer Fragment Instances. DC Universe Online offers downloadable content or Episodes which expand the game universe with new, more difficult missions to progress that provide new or continuations of stories already existing; new costume styles and equipment.[2][3][4]


The opening cinematic takes place in a gritty, war-torn future depicting a final battle between the world's greatest heroes and villains. A future version of Lex Luthor provides voice-over narration. This battle takes place in the ruins of Metropolis. Lex Luthor, wearing a heavy mech armor, commands an army of super-villains that includes Joker, Harley Quinn, Circe, Deathstroke, Black Adam, Giganta, Metallo and Poison Ivy. A scarred, armored Batman commands the heroes, which includes Cyborg, Flash, Green Lantern, Wonder Woman and Green Arrow. Both Ivy and Arrow are shown dead at the beginning of the cutscene. The battle culminates with the death of Wonder Woman at the hands of Lex Luthor, at which point an unshaven, weary Superman hears her dying screams from orbit and flies to Earth to confront Lex. As Superman cradles Wonder Woman's dead body, he collapses to the ground and it is revealed that Lex hid Kryptonite pellets in her mouth as a trap. Lex impales Superman with a kryptonite-tipped spear, and stands back to proclaim his victory only to see Brainiac's war fleet fill the skies.

The scene then shifts to the present-day Watchtower, where the future Lex Luthor, heavily modified with Brainiac technology, is telling the story to the present-day Superman, Batman, and Wonder Woman. Future Lex explains that the deadly final war between the heroes and villains was triggered by the subtle manipulations of Brainiac (who had been slowly downloading their powers over time). With the planet's most powerful beings dead, Brainiac intended to use the pirated data to create an army of metahumans under his control, facilitating his conquest of Earth. As the sole survivor of the war, Lex Luthor could do nothing to resist Brainiac's subjugation of the planet. Lex Luthor explains that he was able to survive in secret and eventually seal the stolen data and energy from Brainiac's mothership in the form of "exobytes" (nanobot-sized devices that can bond to a living host and give them their own superpowers). Lex has traveled into his past to release the exobytes into the atmosphere of present-day Earth. The heroes are outraged, but Lex Luthor explains that because he has done this, soon thousands of new metahumans will be created from ordinary humans (becoming the player-characters of the game). He implores the Justice League to find and train these new metahumans, because Brainiac is coming and the Earth must be ready to succeed where it was once doomed to fail.

When this cinematic ends, the player is brought to the character creation menu to build their new Hero or Villain.

In the second trailer to the game "In Lex we Trust", it is found out that Lex Luthor's description of events leading up to his arrival in the present time is not as he described to the heroes. The trailer begins with Lex Luthor reviving his companion Fracture from being unconscious. Lex Luthor explains that Brainiac's forces have already penetrated the Fortress of Solitude and that their time is running out. As they approach a time portal chamber, a Brainiac Eradicator attacks and Fracture destroys the robotic drone with a small grenade. The two arrive at the portal which is being stabilized by Batman (whose face is disfigured and arm is replaced by a robotic prosthetic due to injuries from the battle of villains and heroes). As more Eradicators enter the chamber, Lex Luthor lies saying his armor is damaged and that he can not hold them off. Batman tells Fracture to take the canister that contains millions of exobytes and go through the portal attacking the Eradicators and buying him more time. Fracture thanks Lex for using the exobytes to give him his powers. Seeing the opportunity he had been waiting for, Lex Luthor kills Fracture describing him as "an excellent lab rat." Before Lex Luthor steps into the portal, Batman calls to Lex Luthor warning that "I'll be coming for you" to which Lex responds "No, you won't" and activates a self-destruct sequence. Lex Luthor enters into the portal and the Fortress of Solitude suffers massive explosions. He arrives in a dark alley, presumably present day. He is greeted by his present-day self who describes him as being late.

It is then shown at the end of "The Prime Battleground" raid that Future Lex Luthor and Lex Luthor are working together to steal Brainiac's power. Lex Luthor is then betrayed by his future self as Future Lex Luthor wants the power for himself. It is then shown that Future Batman survived the explosion at the Fortress of Solitude and has been chasing Future Lex Luthor through time. Future Lex Luthor escapes and Future Batman follows him. In the following cutscene, Future Batman is said to be the last hope for humanity.

Following these events, the heroes are led by Future Batman while villains are led by Future Lex Luthor to the "Nexus of Reality" (the center of the Multiverse itself). Both sides fight for control, using paradoxes from constant time-travels to alter the histories of iconic characters, forcing heroes and villains to work parallel to each other, changing the timelines in the same fashion. What one causes, the other reverts, thus making an infinite cycle. This results in a massive paradox creature that consumes time itself. In the raid, players must stop the creature from destroying the time-space continuum (one of the many raids where both villains and heroes have the same goal). This event ends the storyline the game was based upon, yet also opens up the possibility to enter many new realities.

Since then, there have been certain stories tied in reflecting the Arrowverse, with the introduction of Nanda Parbat, fighting alongside characters featured in Legends of Tomorrow, and a Supergirl Costume Legends character.[5] Content from the DC Extended Universe has also been released. Other comic centered storylines feature "Sons of Trigon", "Blackest Night", "Amazon Fury", "Halls of Power", "Bombshells Paradox", "Bottle City of Kandor", "Harley Quinn" and "Earth 3" in Episodes.[6]


Conceptual art for the game was released on July 4, 2008,[7] and the first trailer was released on July 14, 2008.[8] Sony Online Entertainments stated goal is to make a different kind of MMO game, with The Incredible Hulk: Ultimate Destruction cited as one of the main inspirations for gameplay.

A beta was available from December 14, 2010, until January 5, 2011. There were a number of technical issues that came to light when the beta was closed, which were partially resolved by the game's release. EverQuest developers Chris Cao and Shawn Lord were involved.[9] Chris Cao was the game director up to May 2011, since stepped down to be replaced by Mark Anderson, previously the art director.[10] Mark Anderson has since been replaced by Jens Andersen, who was promoted to Executive Creative Director of Daybreak Game Company with S.J. Mueller creative director. Comic artists Alé Garza, Carlos D'Anda, JJ Kirby, Oliver Nome, Eddie Nuñez, Livio Ramondelli, and Michael Lopez also contributed to the leveling content headlines and cutscenes. In August 2011, there was a global server merge implemented by the developers to consolidate all PC servers and PlayStation 3 servers into 4 individual servers, one for each platform per region. On September 19, 2011 it was announced that the game would go free-to-play on November 1, 2011, along with the addition of microtransactions. In mid-2013, as part of a hosting deal, accounts for the European PC version were sold to ProSiebenSat.1, however they were still capable of using the U.S. servers. DC Universe Online was announced for the PlayStation 4 on June 5, 2013 along with PlanetSide 2, and was released November 15, 2013. After Sony Online Entertainment (SOE), had announced their All Access Membership changes, SOE and ProSiebenSat.1 parted ways, returning the accounts to SOE.[11] All accounts are managed by Daybreak Game Company.[12]

During the fifth anniversary livestream on January 11, 2016, it was announced that the two regional servers, U.S. and EU would receive cross play, with players on PC able to play with players on the PlayStation version on the same server, only divided by region. An Xbox One version of the game was also announced on January 11, 2016 for release on April 29 of the same year,[13] on two regional servers that have since been consolidated into one,[14] not connected to the PC or PS versions of the game.[15] On February 5, both USPC USPS servers were merged into one US server and EUPC and EUPS were merged into one EU server. The same restrictions of not being able to log into or transfer a PS account on PC and vice versa has been maintained.[16]

On October 30, 2017, Daybreak Game Company stated the PlayStation 3 version would shut down on January 31, 2018 to focus on providing a better experience on the PlayStation 4.[17] Utilizing the same PSN, a PlayStation 3 player can access their account on PlayStation 4.


DC Comics announced in January 2010 that they would be releasing DC Universe Online: Legends, a 52-issue weekly limited series (along the lines of previous similar series like 52, Countdown to Final Crisis and Trinity) which would be based on the game.[18] Rather than a weekly series, the format was changed to a biweekly series, with comic book writer Tony Bedard and game writer Marv Wolfman, and with artists Howard Porter and Adriana Melo. The title was launched in February 2011 and concluded in May 2012.[19][20]


Aggregate score
MetacriticPC: 72/100[21]
PS3: 67/100[22]
PS4: 75/100[23]
Review scores
PC Gamer (US)88%[29]

DC Universe Online received mixed or average reviews from critics, having received 7/10 from IGN at initial launch[31] and showing further improvement with 8/10 from IGN after its PlayStation 4 launch.[32]

As of August 2014, the game has 18 million registered users, and is the number one revenue generating free-to-play title on the PlayStation 3 and 4.[33]


  1. ^ a b "About the Game DC Universe Online". DC Universe Online (Official site).
  2. ^ "DC Universe Online Episodes". DC Universe Online.
  3. ^ "Ankh Angel UPC Fire Fighter Super Hero".
  4. ^ Mueller, SJ (October 11, 2016). "Episode 27: Amazon Fury Part III!". DC Universe Online. Retrieved February 14, 2017.
  5. ^ "Supergirl's New TV Costume Now in DC Universe Online!". DC Universe Online.
  6. ^ "DCUO is Coming to Xbox + More News & Reveals!". DC Universe Online.
  7. ^ Cavalli, Earnest (July 4, 2008). "First DC Universe Online Art Unveiled". Wired. Retrieved October 29, 2008.
  8. ^ "DC Universe Online PC Games Trailer – E3 2008: Trailer". IGN. July 14, 2008. Retrieved October 29, 2008.
  9. ^ "DC Universe Online". IGN. Retrieved October 29, 2008.
  10. ^ "News Archive". DC Universe Online. May 18, 2011. Retrieved August 28, 2011.
  11. ^ Savage, Phil (June 17, 2014). "SOE and ProSiebenSat.1 part ways; European PS2, DCUO and EQ2 accounts must soon be transferred". PCgamer.com. Retrieved June 10, 2015.
  12. ^ "Daybreak Game Company: Game Server Status". Daybreak Game Company (Official site).
  13. ^ Juba, Joe (April 29, 2016). "DC Universe Online Is Available Now On Xbox One". Game Informer. Retrieved April 29, 2016.
  14. ^ "DC Universe Online - Server Consolidation: US and EU Xbox One". DC Universe Online. November 14, 2016. Retrieved November 6, 2017.
  15. ^ "DC Universe Online - DCUO is Coming to Xbox + More News and Reveals!". DC Universe Online. January 11, 2016. Retrieved February 5, 2016.
  16. ^ "DC Universe Online - New Episode Inspired By DC's Legends of Tomorrow! Plus, CROSS PLAY!". DC Universe Online. February 5, 2016. Retrieved February 5, 2016.
  17. ^ "DC Universe Online - CHANGES COMING TO DC UNIVERSE ONLINE FOR PLAYSTATION 3". DC Universe Online. October 30, 2017. Retrieved November 6, 2017.
  18. ^ George, Richard (January 15, 2010). "DC Universe Online Becomes Legendary". IGN. Retrieved January 18, 2010.
  19. ^ "DC First Look – DCUO: LEGENDS #1 (DCU Online) Page 1". Newsarama. November 15, 2010. Retrieved August 28, 2011.
  20. ^ "Wolfman, Bedard, Benes Launch "DCUO Legends"". Comic Book Resources. November 15, 2010. Retrieved August 28, 2011.
  21. ^ "DC Universe Online for PC Reviews". Metacritic. CBS Interactive. Retrieved April 8, 2019.
  22. ^ "DC Universe Online for PlayStation 3 Reviews". Metacritic. CBS Interactive. Retrieved April 8, 2019.
  23. ^ "DC Universe Online for PlayStation 4 Reviews". Metacritic. CBS Interactive. Retrieved April 8, 2019.
  24. ^ Alan, Scott (October 3, 2010). "DC Universe Online – Overview". allgame. Retrieved August 28, 2011.
  25. ^ Bedford, John (January 21, 2011). "DC Universe Online Review – MMO – Page 1". Eurogamer.net. Retrieved August 28, 2011.
  26. ^ "DC Universe Online Review, DC Universe Online PC Review". GameSpot.com. January 11, 2011. Retrieved August 28, 2011.
  27. ^ "DC Universe Online review, DC Universe Online PC Reviews". GamesRadar. January 27, 2011. Retrieved August 28, 2011.
  28. ^ Osborn, Chuck (December 2, 2013). "DC Universe Online Review – IGN". IGN.com. Retrieved September 6, 2015.
  29. ^ "DC Universe Online PC Review". Pcgamer.com. January 26, 2011. Retrieved August 28, 2011.
  30. ^ O'Holloran, Dan (January 25, 2011). "DC Universe Online Review for PS3". G4tv. Retrieved August 28, 2011.
  31. ^ Kolan, Nick (January 28, 2011). "DC Universe Online Review - IGN". IGN.com. Retrieved November 4, 2015.
  32. ^ Osborn, Chuck (December 2, 2013). "DC Universe Online Review - IGN". IGN.com. Retrieved November 4, 2015.
  33. ^ Bailey, Kat (August 15, 2014). "The Surprising Success of DC Universe Online on Consoles". USgamer. Gamer Network. Retrieved August 15, 2014.

External links

Big Barda

Big Barda is a fictional superheroine (although sometimes portrayed as a villain) appearing in American comic books published by DC Comics. She first appeared in Mister Miracle #4 (October 1971), and was created by Jack Kirby. Jack Kirby based Barda's physical appearance on Lainie Kazan, who had recently appeared topless in Playboy. Mark Evanier, Kirby's assistant on the Fourth World comics, has stated, "Jack based some of his characters (not all) on people in his life or in the news... the characterization between Scott 'Mister Miracle' Free and Barda was based largely—though with tongue in cheek—on the interplay between Kirby and his wife Roz." In 2011, Big Barda was ranked 75th in Comics Buyer's Guide's "100 Sexiest Women in Comics" list.

Black Canary in other media

Black Canary is a DC Comics superhero. The character has appeared across a range of live-action and animated television shows, as well as in several video games. Originally the pseudo name of the character Dinah Drake, the mantle was later passed on to her daughter, Dinah Laurel Lance. Both characters have appeared in different comic continuations and in other media, but the character has also been known by other names. She is usually portrayed as a proficient fighter, using martial arts and as well as her trademark sonic scream or 'Canary Cry'.

Cyborg Superman

Cyborg Superman is a persona that has been used by two fictional characters in the DC Universe, both of which are supervillains that appear in comic books published by DC Comics.

DC Universe (disambiguation)

The DC Universe is the fictional universe that serves as a setting for DC Comics stories.

DC Universe may also refer to:

DC animated universe, the setting for the animated series based on DC Comics

DC Universe Online, a video game based on the main DC Universe

DC Universe (toyline), a range of toys based on DC Comics characters

DC Universe Classics, a sub-line of the DC Universe toys

DC Universe Animated Original Movies, direct-to-video animated films

DC Universe Roleplaying Game, a role-playing game released in 1999

DC Universe, a number of DC Comics comic books:

DC Universe #0, a 2008 one-shot that acted as a prologue for Final Crisis

DC Universe: Decisions, a 2008–2009 limited series

DC Universe Holiday Bash, three end-of-year specials published between 1996 and 1998

DC Universe: Last Will & Testament, a 2008 one-shot

DC Universe: Legacies, a 10-issue limited series

DC Universe Online: Legends, a 26-issue dual-weekly limited series, based on the DC Universe Online game

DC Universe: Trinity, a 1993 2-issue miniseries which bookended the storyline Trinity

DC Extended Universe, a series of superhero films based on DC Comics characters.

DC Universe (streaming service), a streaming service featuring exclusive television series based on DC Comics

Daybreak Game Company

Daybreak Game Company LLC is an American video game developer based in San Diego. The company was founded in December 1997 as Sony Online Entertainment, a subsidiary of Sony Computer Entertainment, but was spun off to an independent investor in February 2015 and renamed Daybreak Game Company.

They are known for creating the games EverQuest, EverQuest II, The Matrix Online, PlanetSide, Star Wars Galaxies, Clone Wars Adventures, Free Realms, Vanguard: Saga of Heroes, DC Universe Online, PlanetSide 2, H1Z1: Just Survive, and H1Z1: King of the Kill, along with more recent acquisitions Dungeons and Dragons Online and Lord of the Rings Online.

Edwin Neal

Edwin Neal (born July 12, 1945) is an American actor, perhaps best known for his role as the hitchhiker in The Texas Chain Saw Massacre. He has been a top voice talent and actor for years appearing on screen and off, including three voices in Wii's Metroid Prime 3. He has worked with Oliver Stone on JFK and is Robotnik in Sonic the Hedgehog: The Movie. He set a record doing 26 different voices in the only completely unedited version of all 103 episodes of Gatchaman (Battle of the Planets), which included the lead villain Berg Katse. Neal also provides three voices in the DC Universe Online game; those of Two-Face, Killer Croc, and Harvey Bullock.

Harley Quinn in other media

Originally created in September 1992, the fictional comic book character Harley Quinn (full name: Dr. Harleen Frances Quinzel) has been adapted into various other forms of media. The character has appeared in both live action and animated television series, films and video games.

The character was originally voiced by Arleen Sorkin in the DC animated universe. Since then, she has also been voiced by Hynden Walch and Tara Strong in either DC Animated Showcases or in various video games. In the Birds of Prey television series, she was portrayed by actress Mia Sara. The character made her live-action feature film debut in the 2016 film Suicide Squad, portrayed by Margot Robbie.

Huntress (comics)

Huntress is the name of several fictional characters appearing in comic books published by DC Comics, commonly in association with Batman. The two most well known women of the three to bear the Huntress name are Helena Bertinelli and Helena Wayne, the latter being from an alternate DC universe. Although Helena Wayne and Helena Bertinelli are both superheroes, the Huntress of the Golden Age was a supervillain.

Jimmy Olsen

James Bartholomew Olsen, better known as Jimmy Olsen, is a fictional character appearing in American comic books published by DC Comics. Olsen is a young photojournalist working for the Daily Planet. He is close friends with Lois Lane and Clark Kent/Superman, and has a good working relationship with his boss Perry White. Olsen looks up to his coworkers as role models and parent figures.

Jimmy Olsen first appeared around the Golden Age of Comic Books. In the Silver Age, he starred in the humor comic book series, Superman's Pal Jimmy Olsen.

He has appeared in most other media adaptations of Superman. He was portrayed by Tommy Bond in the two Superman film serials, Superman (1948) and Atom Man vs. Superman (1950). Jack Larson played the character on the Adventures of Superman television show. Marc McClure in the Superman films of the 1970s and 1980s, as well as the 1984 film Supergirl. Michael Landes in the first season of Lois and Clark: The New Adventures of Superman and Justin Whalin in the subsequent three seasons. Sam Huntington in the 2006 film Superman Returns, Aaron Ashmore in The CW's Smallville and Michael Cassidy in the 2016 film Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice. In the series Supergirl, he is portrayed by Mehcad Brooks.

Justice League Watchtower

The Watchtower is the name of various bases used by the Justice League of America in DC Comics and various media. It has been portrayed in DC Comics as a building nestled into a crater on Earth's moon. In the DCAU, it is depicted as a spacestation in orbit.

The Watchtower debuted in JLA #4 (April 1997) during Grant Morrison's run on the title. It is constructed of promethium and uses highly advanced Martian, Thanagarian, Kryptonian, and Earth technologies. The arrival of Orion and Big Barda led to the addition of New Genesis and Apokolips technologies.

Livewire (DC Comics)

Livewire (Leslie Willis) is a fictional character and supervillain appearing in comic books published by DC Comics. The character first appeared in September 1997 in the Superman: The Animated Series episode "Livewire". Her first mainstream comic book appearance was in Action Comics #835 (March 2006).

In television, the character was voiced by Lori Petty in various tie-ins to the DC animated universe. In live-action Superman-based television series, she has been portrayed by Anna Mae Routledge in Smallville and Brit Morgan in Supergirl.

Perry White

Perry White is a fictional character appearing in American comic books published by DC Comics. He is the editor-in-chief of the Metropolis newspaper the Daily Planet. The character maintains very high ethical and journalistic standards and is an archetypal image of the tough, irascible but fair-minded boss.

Powerhouse Animation Studios

Powerhouse Animation Studios, Inc. is an Austin, Texas based animation studio founded in April 2001 with a subsidiary called Powerhaus Animation LLC, established in summer of 2014. Powerhouse develops and produces traditional 2D animation, motion comics, motion graphics, art assets, digital paint, and illustration for television series, motion pictures, video game cinemas, commercials, advertising campaigns, educational properties, and entertainment companies.

Science Police

The Science Police is a fictional law enforcement agency in the DC Comics Universe, active in the 21st, 30th and 31st centuries. The organization has also appeared in the Legion of Super Heroes animated series, the DC Universe Online video game, and the Supergirl television series.

Scott Glasgow

Scott Glasgow is a Hollywood-based musical composer. Has a Bachelor of Music from California State University, Northridge and a Master of Music from the San Francisco Conservatory of Music in 2001 where he was a student of Conrad Susa. Scott studied with John Corigliano at the Aspen Music Festival 2002 and was in the ASACP Film Scoring program in 2004. Since 2005 has made his career as a film composer with over 20+ studio features to date. Scott also teaches at the university level, with classes in film scoring at CSUN California State University, Northridge and UCLA University of California, Los Angeles. Scott has contributed addition music to films, TV and games including video games DC Universe Online, TV shows HBO Curb Your Enthusiasm and CBS 60 Minutes and feature films Captain America: Civil War.

Shannon McCormick

Shannon McCormick (born August 19, 1971) is an American film and voice actor. He is best known for his work with Rooster Teeth, voicing Agent Washington in Red vs. Blue and Professor Ozpin in RWBY.

His other roles include Kuroudo Akabane in Get Backers, Masahiro Tamano/Tanma in Wedding Peach, Eric in Pictures of Superheroes, and Bradford in Act of War. He also provided the voices for Arkillo, Shazam, John Constantine, and The Riddler in DC Universe Online. McCormick also has experience as an improv comedian.

Supergirl in other media

The fictional superheroine Supergirl has been adapted into pop culture several times since 1984. This includes a feature film and several animated and live-action television programs.

Vril Dox

Vril Dox, also known as Brainiac 2, is a fictional character published by DC Comics. He first appeared in Superman #167 (February 1964), and was created by Edmond Hamilton, Cary Bates, and Curt Swan.

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